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Crom Dubh - Firebrands And Ashes Award winner

Crom Dubh
Firebrands And Ashes
by Jamison DeBolt at 09 July 2019, 10:03 PM

CROM DUBH is a power four-piece Black Metal band hailing from London. Founded by M. Beonetleah, S. O'Fairdehaigh, and Xavi in 2003, a rehearsal demo was recorded, and following that their first full length was released. Their most powerful album yet, with 7 crushing tracks – "Firebrands and Ashes" was released on June 13, 2019.

Boreal” opens with tribal sounding drums, and a wall of guitars and ethereal leads to set the mood for the album. The song is short and sweet, with no vocals. A great introduction that pulls you in and tells you right where to sit. Next up we have the title track, “Firebrands and Ashes.” This song leaves the ethereal behind and opens with an onslaught of blast beats and chilling vocals. The track evolves into layers of melodies and harmonies reminiscent of the Folkier sound of some first wave Black Metal.

The feedback at the end of this track leads us into our next track, “Last Dust.” "Last Dust" is over 6 minutes of masterful two-note-melodies, tasteful drums, and mood. The atmosphere of this song is just phenomenal! Near the middle of the song I noticed an awesome, haunting lead that, after listening to a few times, I am still unsure whether or not it was a vocal track. Nevertheless, the use of melody in this track specifically really grabs your attention when it comes in strong. The song fades into our next offering, “Ram in a Thicket.” This song starts out with an interesting hook riff with evolving marching-esque snare rudiments and larger than life sounding power chords. When the vocals kick in, immediately you are sent into a war-song feel that is truly captivating.

Overall, CROM DUBH and their offering "Firebrands and Ashes" have been a very refreshing listen for me. The flawless execution of melody and harmony is amazing. They fervently toe the line between “true” and “experimental,” without ever straying too far into either category. As a musician myself, I’d like to add that this is a very difficult accomplishment. CROM DUBH brings a spice to the table that people need to recognize - this is powerful, impactful music that keeps you interested and entertained from the beginning to the end.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Memorability: 10
Production: 10

5 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Boreal
2. Firebrands and Ashes
3. Last Dust
4. Ram in a Thicket
5. Burning
6. Astride the Grave
7. Endless Night
Lineup:
M. Beonetleah – Guitars / Vocals
S. O'Fairdehaigh – Bass / Vocals
A. Haege - Drums
S. Vrath - Guitars
Record Label: Ván Records
     


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